How to stay sane (well kind of) in quarantine

The Enterprise’s Cory L. Higgs (right), and his friend, Amber Rodgers (left), seek safe ways to amuse themselves during the COVID-19 crisis.

By Cory L. Higgs

If you are like me after hour three of quarantine, the ‘wonderful’ idea of working from home and being in my PJ’s all day wore off.

It’s been 12 days since I’ve eaten in a restaurant or been in a public place, and two things have happened. 1. The toilet paper supply is running dangerously low, and I mean DANGEROUSLY low, and 2. I am starting to go a little stir crazy.

So, I thought as a responsible citizen practicing social distancing; I would suggest a few ways others at home could stay sane and not feel like such a hermit.

Netflix is an obvious go-to, but like anything, after days of watching tv, the allure wears off; however, I strongly suggest the show “Kingdoms” it’s in Korean, but you aren’t going anywhere and have time to learn. I’ve also been logging quite a few hours on YouTube, watching documentaries and DIY videos I will never attempt.

Go for a walk! Just don’t walk in a crowded area. Luckily for me, I frequent hiking trails and have yet to run into another human—my best bud, Amber Rodgers, tags along on my hikes. We recently hiked a beautiful trail that snakes along a cascading river in Carroll County. Rocks glistened with mist and were graced by the most decadent lace of moss and lichen. We reached a deep pool along the river and went closer for inspection. The water was alive with color; the rocks glowed in every color imagination. Wait. Hold on— Is that a dog’s footprint? No way, too big. Turns out amidst out leisurely walk enjoying nature’s spoils, we stumbled across the watering hole of a large wild cat, possibly a mountain lion.

Needless to say, our nature walk turned panicked, and we jogged out of there. If you go on a walk, use caution because the only thing worse than the COVID-19 virus is getting mauled by a lion.

Another rather daring way to pass the time is to ride the back roads. After our lion issue, my dear friend Amber decided an impromptu car adventure was in order. We filled up with fuel, and after washing our hands, set out determined to only travel the back roads. I really like this idea to pass the time. We saw some beautiful countryside from the safety of our car.

Pro tip: if the road looks sketchy, maybe go to the next one to explore. Being the daring woman that she is, Amber shot down a muddy road in Indian Valley, and after a nail-biting ATV adventure in her car, we came to a river. A white-water river. Possibly the same river the mountain lion takes its pool breaks in. After hours of driving on back roads and shooting the breeze, we found ourselves in Radford of all places. We made a quick pit stop for some rations for our journey home, washed our hands, and made the trek back. After about 4 hours, we made it home.

I would not suggest this adventure to anyone who is unable to hike or not in the mood to make a quick get-away.

Pets, how could I forget pets? Your pets are another great way to pass the time. Take them for a walk or drive, or maybe an impromptu dance party in the living room.

My buddy Goose, a 130-pound lap dog, has also been feeling the effects of the quarantine and is bored out of his doggy mind. Goose enjoys feeding and watering the goats and cows on the farm, so we loaded up with some expired marshmallows and bread and headed to the goat barn. While doling out the marshmallows and bread, Goose decided to socialize; his first mistake. While goats look a lot like dogs with horns, they aren’t, and in fact they despise dogs in their personal space. WHAM! BOOM! ARRFF! Goose does not recommend tending to farm animals to pass the time; he does, however, endorse online shopping; we are currently looking at dog-sized helmets to avoid any other goat-related butting injuries.

Joking aside, this is a very serious issue facing all of us, not just here in Southwest Virginia but the world. While the virus may not affect all of us, we need to do our part to slow the infection curve and not overwhelm our hospitals. So, wash your hands, drink some OJ, and have some fun. To be on the safe side, maybe avoid goats, mountain lions, and Korean TV dramas.


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